Tightened supervision has been called for newly emerging diseases, including avian influenza strains H1N1, H5N1, H7N9, dengue fever and hand-foot-mouth, which hit the country hard in the first six months of 2013.

The warning came from experts as the health sector found several diseases remained prominent in H1, especially the number of avian influenza H1N1 infection cases.

Statistics showed the avian influenza H1N1 virus was detected in 44 percent of flu cases, in 52 percent of patients with acute respiratory infections and in 73 percent of serious pneumonia cases, according to a report by the Ministry of Health's Preventive Medicine Department.

However, the rate of positive H1N1 samples has started to decrease since the last week of July, said department deputy director Tran Dac Phu at a conference on August 20.

Phu explained that the surge of H1N1 cases in 2013 may have been caused by disease cycles and the seasonal characteristics of the flu virus.

"The leaders of some provinces and cities haven't paid enough attention to disease prevention," said Phu, stressing cooperation between preventive and treatment units was weak in some localities while some hospitals were slow to report transmission disease cases, making it difficult for preventive units to carry out effective protection measures for communities.

Phu added that newly emerging diseases prevention has also faced difficulties due to the complicated development of diseases and peoples' inadequate awareness of disease prevention.

The department also stated the country reported nearly 37,800 cases of hand-foot-mouth (HFM) disease, including 13 fatalities across nine provinces and cities in the first six months of 2013, a decline of 40 percent year-on-year.

Vietnam also recorded more than 20,500 dengue fever cases and 14 fatalities, a decline of nearly 23 percent compared to the same period last year.

However, dengue infection cases increased in some localities, such as the central provinces of Khanh Hoa and Phu Yen and the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak.-VNA